What do you type into Google Search when you’re searching for a freelance copywriter?
If you need website copywriting done, you may search for “freelance website copywriter” and a location.
You could also search for “SEO copywriter” and then add in a speciality like “SEO medical and health copywriter”.
If you’ve never hired or worked with a freelance copywriter before it can be overwhelming as you scroll through search results.
After a while the website images and content start to blur into one another, making it hard to know which freelance copywriter is the best fit for your project.
Most content creators and copywriters should have the following skills:
- An ability to write for the web (sometimes called SEO copywriting)
- Strong grammar, spelling and punctuation skills
- A high level of competence in using your business tone of voice in a way that appeals to your target audience
- An ability to write unique, fresh compelling content that is different to your competitors.
Once you’ve narrowed down the field of freelance copywriters, it’s time to use the age-old marketing “point of difference/unique selling proposition” tool.
When I first started out as a freelance copywriter over 10 years ago, my website copy was pretty similar to other copywriters.
And while it attracted enquiries that converted to paying clients, I never felt like my prospective clients knew me.
But all this changed when I began volunteer work as a Seeing Eye Dogs Australia puppy carer!
A few months after our pet dog died at the grand old age of 16, my husband and I really wanted another dog.
Soon after I noticed a local newspaper ad; “temporary puppy carers needed urgently”.
An opportunity to care for, train and socialise a gorgeous Labrador or Golden Retriever puppy – yes please!
Fast forward through the application process, interview, police checks and working with children checks and our first Seeing Eye Dog puppy arrived.
An 8-week old golden Labrador puppy named Jay was presented to us with a ‘puppy carer manual’.
The 3 lessons I’ve learned from puppy caring that I use in my freelance copywriting business
Lesson#1: being a puppy carer has helped me connect with my community
I love running my freelance copywriting business from a home office. Before I became a volunteer puppy carer though, there were days during the week when I didn’t get out of the house.
It’s well known that feelings of isolation and a lack of connection can quickly snowball into stress and feelings of overwhelm. Which, as an aside, is one of the major motivators behind Bek Lambert creating the Freelance Jungle in 2010.
In November 2018 the Australian Loneliness Report found 1 in 4 Australian adults reported they felt lonely. Lifeline Australia states, “Everyone feels lonely from time to time, but long periods of loneliness or social isolation can have a negative impact on your physical, mental and social health.”
As part of my puppy caring volunteer work, I need to train and socialise each puppy. For the last 6 years, I’ve spoken to, met and made more friends and associates in my community and neighbourhood than ever before. A ‘quick trip’ to the shops that would have taken me 10 minutes now takes double that.
From being asked questions about how the puppy is going, to how to get involved and start puppy caring themselves.
Wherever I go, my puppy in their training jacket is with me:
- The supermarket, cafes, restaurants and shopping malls
- Movies, AFL games, Australian Open and comedy shows
- Visit relatives in hospital and aged care homes
Lesson#2 : being a puppy carer has improved my copywriting
As a freelance SEO copywriter, my work requires me to write fresh, compelling content that Google will love and people will read. Part of this process involves knowing what my client wants and writing this in a way that attracts their target audience.
Puppy caring requires:
- A great deal of patience
- Looking for physical cues from the puppy
- Noticing what’s going on in the immediate environment
- Empathy and care by putting myself into the puppy’s paws to understand what they’re feeling
This translates into my copywriting work and has made me a stronger writer.
Lesson#3 : being a puppy carer has helped me practice mindfulness
Training a puppy is fun filled and full of laughs. From the puppy finally remembering how to ‘sit’ and ‘stay’ in all environments to when they guide you calmly up the stairs at the local shops.
I’ve learned that staying in the present moment while training the puppy is a big key to success. When my attention and focus is on teaching the puppy and helping it learn, the training goes smoothly and is fun. If my attention wavers, the puppy knows and won’t be as focused on listening to commands and obeying hand signals.
This is just like my freelance copywriting process. Staying in the present moment as I write content for clients helps my creative process flow effortlessly.
But if my browser has too many tabs open, my creative process feels like I’ve got gumboots on walking in mud.
Volunteering as a puppy carer has not only helped me build a better freelance copywriting business, it’s helped me personally.
As an introvert, I’m now more confident talking to total strangers, I’ve made new friends and have formed strong bonds with other puppy carers.
Like to work with me as a freelance SEO copywriter? Email me here.
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